35 Things I've Learned on my Evolutionary Journey: A Pre-Birthday Reflection Blog
Updated: Mar 18, 2022
In the year leading up to my 35th (April 7, 2022! okay!) birthday, I began a new journey of evolution. I've always been a woman who's prided myself in my unyielding quest to grow beyond my comfort zones, but 34 was a year of olympic style stretching. I mean, I bended, mended, flexed, and broke, all with the desire of revealing this diamond within my core. I didn't realize I would take it as far as I did. I didn't realize I would challenge myself to the point of an emotional breakdown, but I needed to get out of my complacency so I could chase my next level in life, and interestingly, that didn't look like what it looks like for most people.
I've always been a risk taker. As an entrepreneur, you have to be neurotic, delusional, a fantastical believer in things unseen as you flirt with and romance failure more often than your successes. I've become rather comfortable with discomfort, never quite realizing when I'm stressed until it's manifested physically. So, my stretching this year had very little to do with work.
I, a self-proclaimed love guru, love-goddess, Freja, realized the area I truly needed to stretch was in the area of love. I began asking myself, "do I love? I mean, do I genuinely love?" I started 2021 out reading the book, Love, Freedom, Aloneness by OSHO with my now, defunct book club. We explored that none of us actually, really love. We like, we seek to own, to possess, but rarely are we operating in 1st Corinthians 13 level of love with the romantic partners we actually wanted to love.
As I evaluated my relationships, specifically the ones in which I felt a true affinity, infatuation, enchantment for someone, I understood my erratic, unexplainable behavior was often a result of fear, the fear of being love, the fear of releasing control, the fear of being free and loving in totality. This journey, in itself, continues... I became stripped to my bareness as I've allowed love to devour and humble me, forcing me to submit to the lessons it has come to teach. This year, I have learned... I am learning. Love, true love, is my teacher.
If you know me personally, you know that every engagement, encounter, or conversation I have is laced with multidimensional ideas, exploratory concepts, and challenging questions. I must admit that for the last twenty years, in addition to studying psychology (educationally), I have used each of you as my subjects, intricately exploring your minds, your behaviors, your language, your love, your conversation styles and reactions, so I could gain a better understanding of these experiences we call life and love. Knowing you better, relating to you has always been an effort to understand myself better... and to then share the summary of the information I've gathered with the masses to learn a deeper acceptance and true agape love in my long awaited book (friends, trust me, it's coming... soon).
In 2021, I made my rounds with the people in my tribe, asking them to share with me things they would tell their younger selves, so as I strip to my bare self in preparation for my 35th year of life, I am re-clothing myself with these awarenesses and sharing them with you. No worries friends, we'll make it short and sweet... uh huh...
"Perfection is an illusion." - Lynell Green. Everyone messes up. Everyone has moments they would rather not reflect on. Everyone has revelations after they have had some life changing moment in which they recognize the foolishness of their youth, but if you hadn't messed up or had the experience, you wouldn't have the wisdom you do now to make better decisions in the future. The etymology of perfection is complete. We are only complete when we have exited the world.
Take your time young blood. I have rushed my whole life only to wind up right where I'm at. Rushed to get married, to have kids, rushed relationships, only to realize that all of my rushing was really a subconscious attempt to thwart off the actual commitment of doing the things! Oxymoronic, huh? When we move forcefully, rushing, we repel that which we actually seek. So that begets the question, are we rushing because we want to get it over with? Are we rushing because we want to check it off of a list just to say it happened? #conundrum! "What you in a rush for? Are you trying to meet your maker? Are you runnin' out of time? Time ain't really real, you really need to chill. It's all an illusion." - Summer Walker
Self Love is everything, but it isn't what you think it is. Despite popular belief, self-love is not just spa days and pedicures. It's telling people no, when you really don't want to do something; ending unfulfilling relationships because they've reached their expiration dates rather than forcing yourself to exist with someone you don't want; putting an end date to a job you dread going to each day; switching careers at forty-five because you always wanted to be a scientist! It's doing the real, hard work that will help you feel peace in the long run.
Be clear and firm with your boundaries. It makes life easier and relationships more fulfilling. It's hard to set boundaries, but it moves us from being a victim into being an equal participant. It removes so much conflict because we don't rely on others to make us comfortable. We listen to ourselves first and offer ourselves only when we have filled our own cups.
DON'T SETTLE! "If you aren't attracted to your partner, it'll make for long days and longer nights." - Gwendoln Jones, 99 (my grandmother)- I mean friends, it's a disservice to yourself and to your partner to not want to make love because you simply aren't attracted to them physically, emotionally, or intellectually. I mean, without attraction, that person is your platonic friend, and platonic friends can't fulfill the one need that is required by your partner. So, don't play yourself or your partner!
"I wish women would understand that we are growing, too." David Adams. Give grace. Have we ever noticed when a man does something we don't like we say, "men are (insert some general insult that you will apply to all men)," yet when a woman messes up, we offer grace, empathy, and kindness? Let's try to practice understanding with one another.
Be thirsty for love... don't hold back! Look silly, look corny, look foolish. I mean, love is one of the most euphoric feelings you'll ever experience and to hold back is to not truly immerse yourself in the possibilities of love! Fall without reserve... and then, pick yourself up, and fall again! There are unlimited possibilities for love ❤️
The people who mind don't matter, and the people who matter, don't mind. Your true tribe may need to adjust as you evolve, but they will root for you and cheer as you do! If they don't, they don't get to go with you to the next level!
Use your voice, take your time, listen, and be patient while communicating your feelings. When you are in conversation, it's okay to pause, to breathe and reset your nervous system so you can recalibrate and say what you actually mean to say.
Sometimes, you need to take a few days to clear your mind and re-engage. So many things affect our emotions in the moment... hormones, food we ate, the environment, the other person's tone of voice, the way we look, the way we feel. Take a nap. Eat some food. Do something else to activate your mind. When you are refreshed, you might see and feel things in a more peaceful way.
Absence really makes the heart grow fonder, but don't let the grass grow under your feet. Take your time with love, but don't assume you'll have all the time for that particular love. Love on people while you have them around, and ask them to help you learn to love them better if you don't understand how.
Save some money, spend some money! Remember when the pandemic hit? We had two dreadful experiences... some people had no money... and some people had no adventurous, valuable life experiences and then, outside was closed. It's your job to find a happy medium.
Don't count yourself out- many of men have tried and failed because they assumed they weren't enough, when in actuality, they were just what we were seeking. "Whether you think you can or you cannot, you're right!" - Henry Ford.
Your intuition is truth almost every single time! - You think s/he's thinking about you? They are. You think you shouldn't go to work today, don't. You think you should grab that laptop before you head out for coffee, do! Wisdom teaches us not to question that guttural feeling. It's usually very accurate.
Fuck yes, or Fuck no... ughhh... maybe (look up the theory)- I'm learning that sometimes, chemistry takes time to build and the nature of your purpose is not always immediately obviously. Maybe can become a certainty.
If it's not sitting right on your soul, do something about it...now
Do all things with honor and integrity. You stand on the shoulders of your ancestors. You are the culmination of the totality of their lives. Treat one person with the same respect you treat everyone, despite the situation, and if you can't, walk away in peace.
"There are a lot of people with the right away in the grave." Marion Duke Greene (my grandfather)
"Love feels elusive during the search. To recognize it, be still." Judith Falls
"Compliment more, criticize less." - Judith Falls
Moments are fleeting. It's the long haul that matters. - Judith Falls. Friendships and relationships grow deeper and fuller over time. "To arrive on time, leave early." - Judith Falls
Start focusing on your health, early. - Cathy Ward
Stop playing small - Cathy Ward
Prioritize your relationship with God.- Cathy Ward
Stop trying to plan everything out- Dr. Marla Wyche
"You go through shit and you grow through shit. It's not the end of the world. A healed scar is a symbol of a life lived."- Dr. Marla Wyche
"You don't have to do what everyone else is doing."- Dr. Marla Wyche
"People may be jealous of your shine but have no clue how hard you worked or the battles you fought to get there." - Lenora
"Most of these people out here are avatars."- Sharday Jones, M.A.Ed. We are all in the matrix sweet loves... a lot these mofos ain't even got a soul. Understand, you are on a whole other frequency.
Don't stop loving people just because they aren't doing what you want them to do. Love in detachment.
Why do we need to label everything or have predictability? That reduces God's ability to be creative and to perform miracles in our lives. Allow Him/Her to surprise, to astound, to render you a beautifully painted canvas. God is an immaculate artist... look at the ladybugs, and the peacocks, the rainbows... just look around. Imagine what S/he can do to you!
Some people aren't your friends; they simply want to study your moves to conquer you.
It's okay to break baby...If you are feeling down and broken, shock yourself into evolution by changing your environment, changing the people around you, changing you! Go on a trip. Get a hair cut... try something new... or someone new ;)
Treat everyone with honor and decency. People may not remember what you say, but they will always remember how you made them feel, and the same people you see on your way up are the same people you will see on your way down! A collection of quotes, authors unknown!
Do NOT be too afraid, too proud, too together to ask for and accept help. It allows the giver to fulfill his or her spiritual responsibility. If you reject, you prohibit their ability to serve their higher purpose.